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Special Project Intern: Low Cost & Open Source Hardware

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Company/Organization: Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars


Tools like Foldscope, a $1 microscope, and Arduino, a microprocessor for creating customized scientific instrumentation, show how low cost hardware (including open, proprietary, and mixed solutions) can accelerate research while making it more transparent and participatory. These tools have the potential to change how, and by whom, science is done, within professional spaces and broader communities. But more work is needed to understand the capacity and future potential for low-cost hardware to accelerate and broaden participation in scientific research. We are seeking a research intern with an interest in exploring democratized scientific research and technological development through the lens of low cost hardware.

This intern will work with the STIP team to:

Conduct background research on low cost hardware to understand policy accelerators and barriers, existing and emerging communities and networks, issues around data governance, data quality, and scale, and related topics.
Write or edit articles and blog posts on topics of interest or reporting out on local events.
Support meetings, conferences, and other events, gaining valuable event management experience.
Provide general logistical support.

This is a paid position available for 15-20 hours a week for graduate-level students only. Applicants from all backgrounds will be considered, though experience conducting cross and trans-disciplinary research is an asset. Ability to work independently is critical. Interested applicants should submit a resume, cover letter describing their interest in this project, and two writing samples. One writing sample should be formal (e.g., a class paper); the other, informal (e.g., a blog post or similar).

Application Process and Materials

For all internships, please submit all application materials to Elizabeth.Newbury@wilsoncenter.org. Please specify in the subject line the intended time period for your internship with [SEMESTER] [YEAR] Internship e.g. “SPRING 2020 Internship”. If there is a specific topic area or project, please note that in the subject line of the email, e.g. FALL 2020 Internship for Digital Futures Project or otherwise clearly state the focus points in the cover letter.

Due to the sheer volume of applications we receive, only those candidates selected for interviews will be contacted. To ensure your consideration, please submit only a completed application.

A completed application will have the following materials, compiled into a single PDF.

Cover letter explaining your interest in STIP, including dates and availability and confirmation that you can serve in DC
A brief writing sample ideally demonstrating your work in science and technology research.


Please note: international students studying in the U.S. are eligible, but they must hold a valid F-1 or J-1 visa and appropriate work authorization. All international students must obtain written permission from their designated school official or responsible officer for visas at their university stating they have valid immigration status and are eligible to intern at the Wilson Center.

The Wilson Center is not able to sponsor visas for interns. If you are an international student not already studying in the U.S. on a F-1 or J-1 visa, then you must go through a university exchange program or an outside organization that will sponsor your visa. You must have the appropriate visa to apply for this internship.

The Wilson Center is an equal opportunity employer and follows equal opportunity employment guidelines in the selection of interns.



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technology  research 
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